Cape Town - Divine Lunga was the star performer for Mamelodi Sundowns but the unbeaten champions could not capitalise and had to settle for a goalless draw against Cape Town City at the Cape Town Stadium on Saturday.
The Zimbabwean left-back Lunga was a two-prong force for the side, as he stood out on defence and attack. He was rock-solid out wide on the left in defence and gave away nothing.
On attack, he overlapped with great effect and created two scoring opportunities and laid on a slew of promising feeds into the opposition goalmouth from out wide.
Sundowns co-coach Manqoba Mngqithi said afterwards that Lunga was pivotal in the team's performance and created potentially game-changing opportunities.
“I think we had some moments first half on the wing play, more especially with Divine Lunga on the left channel," said Mngqithi. "I think there we weren’t decisive enough and clinical enough.
"Those moments, in as much as they were few and far between, could have decided the game.”
Mngqithi was unhappy with a point from the stalemate but felt City were a worthy opponent. It was only the second time, the unbeaten Sundowns dropped points in the Premiership.
“I’m never satisfied with a point, but it was a very good match," said Mngqithi. "They gave a very good account of themselves.
“One thing you must give credit to, and probably for both teams, was the high number of turnovers. It was a result of counter-pressing from both teams.
“Both midfield groups worked very hard to make sure they brought stability. At times the tempo of the game was a little bit faster and that’s why there were a lot of mistakes from time to time.
“We played against a very good team and people must never take this team for granted. It is a very good team and there were stages in which they threatened us especially on transitions. This team deserves a bit of respect too.
“They had Fagrie (Lakay) always looking for possibilities and posed a danger. While I'm not satisfied with a point, I respect the fact that I also got a point and a clean sheet."
Central midfielder Haashim Domingo was a livewire for Sundowns and at the heart of several sorties into the opposition goalmouth. He dropped back when required to defend and struck one superb free-kick. He was named 'Man of the Match' for his tireless efforts.
Central defender Grant Kekana again served notice that national coach Hugo Broos needs him to marshal the rear-guard in the national team. He seemed in control and diffused several situations by reading the game well. He enhanced his standing as one of the finest defenders in the Premiership.